August 4, 2008

Photographer Casts Unique Views With Montages Round the Minister

THE vastness of York Minster has been captured on film using a pioneering photo-montage process which aims to provide visitors with a

new perspective on the magnificent building.

Conventional photography of the interior can only convey its beauty in rectangular frames.

But artist Edward Hill has spent years developing a technique which allows him to assemble a mosaic of pictures and then spin them into a circle using a computer.

Although the montages are displayed as 2-D prints on the wall, as the eye goes from one to the other they give a sense of a three dimensional view.

Visitors can see the results for themselves at an exhibition of Mr Hill's work this month.

He said: "I have photographed most of the interiors of the major cathedrals. They are very interesting inside because of the geometry. They provide spectacular images."

He visited the Minster in 2006-07 to take the shots using a tripod on a rotating head.

To get the downward images he takes a series of snaps using lenses that make it appear the photos are being taken higher than they actually are.

His feet appear on some of the original shots showing the pattern on the floor but were edited out on the computer. He added: "The Minster is a wonderful place and some of my earliest work was with cathedrals.

"The idea was to try and show everything. Not just like normal photographer - where you see a limited amount of what you are experiencing through a rectangular frame.

"I wanted an image that did justice to the totality."

Mr Hill, 59, is based in Greenwich. His varied career began with his training at Venini Glass Factory in Venice in 1973, which led to 16 years designing and working with glass in a studio in Greenwich.

After a spell as a landscape photographer, he moved on to creating photospheres in 1999, developing the digital photographic method over the next six years.

He has exhibited his work frequently since 2003 at cathedrals throughout Britain and was recently selected for international exhibition by the Royal Photographic Society.

The exhibition of Photospheres opens at the Minster today and can be seen until August 29 in the North Transept. A

Minster spokesman said: "The 'down' photosphere holds the viewer suspended over a miniature world while the 'up' photosphere frames the vastness of space overhead."

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